Medina Group Takes Valid Signatures Complaint To Ohio Supreme Court

Feb 3, 2020

A group of voters from the City of Medina are filing a complaint with the Ohio Supreme Court arguing that the Medina County Board of Elections invalidated signatures for their ballot initiative that should have been considered legitimate.

Medina City Council passed a pro-LGBTQ ordinance that adds sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes. A group of Medina citizens wanted voters to overturn that ordinance says about 50 signatures were wrongfully invalidated for not matching those on record.

The group says it needed 983 valid signatures to qualify for a referendum on the November ballot, but it fell 44 signatures short. With help from the Ohio Christian Alliance, they found 47 signees to submit an affidavit as proof that those people wanted their name on the petition.

"It is clear that the rights of these voters is being denied. The 47 voters whose signatures were wrongfully invalidated as well as the other signers of the referendum petition were denied their right to the ballot," Chris Long, Ohio Christian Alliance.

The Medina County Board of Elections has yet to respond to a request for comment.

Long also argues that they have tried to get the Ohio Secretary of State's Office involved.

Maggie Sheehan, spokesperson for Secretary of State Frank LaRose issued a statement saying, "Although the state office does not have the authority to supersede in the county board’s work on these matters, we’ve worked at every turn to make sure that the concerns we are hearing are being taken seriously by the board. As oftentimes is the case when a group or a candidate disagrees with determinations made by their board, they certainly have the right to challenge those decisions in court."